Discussion in 'Acoustic Keyboards' started by David French, Jul 22, 2005.
They're not MP3s.
http://www.cheap-tracks.com/~french/C.wav - the obvious fix works.
David S, the gains, I thought, were matched. I guess my eaqr was off that day. Of course there was a little less gain on the left due to the positioning. I only have discrete gain steps on the board. Maybe that's part of it.
Comedy of errors here. Ha! I was listening to all four with MediaPlayer and "assumed" MP3's. Still hearing some brassy, shrill artifacts stuff, didn't even look at the extensions. Oh well.
So what are they.
What are the brassy shrill artifacts? I guess it's the piano!
David, as nobody else seems to be interested, are you going to spill the beans, now?
I'm interested - just this little thing called TIME that's in short supply these days. I listened this AM, but had to use cans so I don't wake the family.
My preference in order:
B&C are very close (by my ears, anyway), but B seems slightly more open.
A sounded a bit "clangy" or perhaps "brassy" to use David S's term - although he applied to to C, not A. :shock:
Some different cans reveal more of a difference between B&C. It might be a few days before I can sit down and listen in earnest through the monitors - but I'm interested in knowing what's what.
Nope, not going to spill it yet. I'm sure at least Jeremy will chime in.
I guess I should list my own preference...
Favorite: A - Not as much higs and not as open as i'd usually like, but the buttery low end won me over.
Second: B - definitely a very nice sound and would be totally useable, but not as special as A.
Third: C - a bit brittle. Might be mice if the piano was mixed with other instruments, but probably too edgy for solo.
I agree with you.--Uncle Russ
So you agree that mixing the piano with other instruments would lead to MICE?!? :shock:
Thanks for agreeing with me... makes me feel special!
I downloaded the three files and burned a pmcd with iTunes. I took the disc into one of our mastering suites and gave a brief listen.
I did not feel any strong preference for one over the other based on sonic quality. 'A' seemed a little wider, 'C' was a little more clangy bright.
I did not get a sense of hole-in-the-middle.
I like the balance of direct and reverb (though I feel the mics are a tad to close to the piano).
The most offending quality in this recording is the performer. His/her touch is very pokey which makes the piano's tone metallic/brassy in all the mic versions.
I would choose 'A' or 'B' based on sonic quality. But I might have to choose 'C' based on its having a more proper left/right hand balance.
Continuing the critique...
Since there is not, IMO, night-n-day differences between these mic arrays, the real question is not really one of sonic quality. What I would ask myself is, "am I recording Debusy?"; "Is my recording technique recreating the illusion of an impressionistic composition?"
Given the style of the music and the limitations of this performance, I would be inclined to back away from the instrument. This would (hopefully) mitigate the pokey quality of the performance and garnish a little diffusion. This being an attempt to introduce more mystery to the recording's presentation.
Overall I think the technical quality is good given the factors I believe I am perceiving.
Trust me, from a person that was there, the problems are my fault and the fault of the piano. This guy had a great touch... a very sensitive player.
But this is the big question. What does convey an impression, the music or the sound. I have heard many recordings of French piano music where someone thought a diffuse, overly reverberant, soft, mushy sonic flavour would move me, the listener, into an impressionistic state of mind. This is very silly. I want to hear the instrument as clear and as close as normal, as for any other music in fact, think live experience, and let the composition, notes and the playing deliver the impressionism.
My head and shoulders oustanding favourite recording of Gaspard is Pogorelich, because of his articulation, clarity of playing and DG's almost cold clinical piano sound. IMO, only on this recording does one "see" the water and Ravel's genius. Others are messing around in a wash of sonic soup and articulation hell and sloppiness, no impressions there except of one mediocre experience.
Also, this was a live concert, and there was Bach right before it. :shock:
You had four stereo pairs setup for a live concert? :shock: You are very lucky to have had such accomodating conditions. We sometimes get told to move our single main pair, "cause the mics are throwing shadows on the stage."
They were very discrete and on the same stand. It was no more mess than just the two.
Both. One should compliment the other. Or, at least, on should not defeat the other.
Agreed, this ott approach is silly. But I am not advocating soaking something in verb and calling it French. I personally like a little pepper on my baked potato, but not horse radish.
But when the performer/instrument/recording technique is not relaying the impressionism, we as engineers can and should help things along by changing mic perspectives.
Okay, practicality understood. I would still reposition the mics for better lefthand/righthand balance, and less clang from the instrument. Again, I think the sonic quality of your recording is good. It certainly compares to many commercial recordings out there.
And that's it in a sentence. It DOES compare and in fact "beat" some commercial recordings on the market. All opinions and advice aside, this is ultimately the goal. Congrats and keep it up.
Thanks Jeremy. Are you gonna cast you're vote?
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